If you are unhappy with any aspect of our service or have a query about your bill, we will use our best efforts to resolve your concern fairly, professionally and as quickly as possible.
In the first instance, you should raise the matter promptly, either verbally or in writing, with lawyer responsible for your case, as identified in our initial Letter of Engagement. The lawyer will discuss your concerns and attempt to resolve the matter informally.
If the matter cannot be resolved informally, or you would prefer not to discuss the issue with the lawyer dealing with your case, you will be entitled to raise the matter as a formal complaint in accordance with our Complaints Procedure, as set out below:
- You should prepare a brief written summary of your complaint and submit this, together with any relevant documents or correspondence, to Tim Davies at email@example.com or by post to the office address of TJD Law at Two Capital Court, Bittern Road, Exeter, Devon EX2 7FW. Tim Davies can also be contacted by telephone on 01392 346146. Tim Davies is a Partner of TJD Law and is a qualified solicitor. Your written submission should also include an explanation of the resolution that you are seeking.
- If your complaint relates to work undertaken by Tim Davies, you will be given the option of having your complaint considered by a different partner of the Firm. In circumstances where it is felt that there is no appropriate person within the Firm to investigate your complaint, we will discuss with you a means by which the complaint might be investigated by an independent person.
- Your complaint will be acknowledged within 48 hours and will then be investigated through a review of the relevant files and discussion with the lawyer responsible for your case.
- In complex matters, you may be asked to provide additional information or documents, or to attend a meeting. This will enable the Investigating Officer to better understand the nature of your complaint, the relevant issues, and the possible forms of resolution.
- You will receive a written response to your complaint as soon as reasonably practicable and no later than 4 weeks from the date of your formal complaint, unless there are exceptional circumstances. You will be notified in writing if the Investigating Officer is unable to comply with this timescale and the reasons for this. The written response will summarise the findings of the Investigating Officer and explain the underlying reasoning for these findings.
- No charge will be made for investigating and responding to your complaint.
- If any part of your complaint is upheld, the Investigating Officer will consider how best to resolve the matter in your interests, having regard to all of the circumstances of the case, and may propose a course of action. In many cases, it will be appropriate for the Firm itself to offer remedial action to rectify your complaint. In more serious cases, it may be appropriate to advise you to take independent legal advice.
- Before any action is taken, you will be provided with an opportunity to comment further on Firm’s handling of your complaint, the findings and the proposed resolution.
If, after completion of our internal Complaints Procedure, you still do not feel that the matter has been resolved to your satisfaction, you may have the right to contact the Legal Ombudsman. The Legal Ombudsman deals with complaints against lawyers and operates an independent, non-judicial dispute resolution procedure. However, the service is only available to individual members of the public, very small businesses, charities, clubs and trusts.
The Legal Ombudsman can be contacted via the website www.legalombudsman.org.uk, by telephone on 0300 555 0333, by email at firstname.lastname@example.org, or by writing to: Legal Ombudsman, PO Box 6806, Wolverhampton, WV1 9WJ. You will normally need to bring a complaint to the Legal Ombudsman within six months of receiving our final written response to your complaint or within six years of the act or omission about which you are complaining (or, if outside of this period, within three years of when you should reasonably have been aware of it).
If your complaint is about the reasonableness of our charges, you can apply to the Court for an assessment of our bill under section 70 of the Solicitors Act 1974. You have the right to such an assessment if your application is made within one month from the date of delivery of the bill. The Court shall have a discretion to order an assessment (on such terms, if any, as it thinks fit) if your application is made after one month but within 12 months from the date of delivery of the bill. No order for assessment will be made after the expiration of 12 months from the delivery of the bill except in exceptional circumstances.
An order for the assessment of a bill will determine both the amount payable, if any, under the bill, and also the liability for the costs of the assessment itself. Unless the bill is reduced on assessment by one fifth or more, you will likely be required to meet the costs of the assessment.
For any queries relating to the content or application of this Procedure, please contact:
Tim Davies, Partner
Two Capital Court
Devon EX2 7FW
Tel: 01392 346146